Building trust is an important part of your branding and marketing strategy. But how do you do it? Here are 7 tips that will show you how.
Did you ever wonder if your customers trust your brand? Do potential customers know what your brand is, and are you effectively conveying it to them? Whether you’re a mom or pop business or a thriving, national restaurant chain, building your brand, ie, building trust should be paramount. In fact, according to an April 2010 study undertaken by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and at the University of California, Berkeley, 88% of people said they refused to give out information to a business because they thought it was too personal, unnecessary, and they didn’t have full trust in that business.
Here are seven ways to effectively build your brand and trust in you and your business:
- Make sure the individuals who are out on the streets – or in the office manning the phones – are trustworthy ambassadors. Remember, first impressions count. A great way to help make your business (brand) be considered trustworthy is to build word-of-mouth advertising. Referrals count.
- Build your brand step-by-step. Every interaction you have with your customers, or potential customers, helps build that base of trust.
- Be relevant. If your business or service can make a difference in the lives of individuals, make certain they know that and follow through on your promise of relevance. Talk about what makes your business different in your on hold messages.
- If your business has an on-line presence, make certain you are transparent with visitors to the site as to what information you are collecting and why and what you will do with the information you gathered. If you don’t plan on making your customers’ name and information available to outside sources, let them know that up front.
- Garner customer reviews. This goes hand-in-hand with word-of-mouth advertising but if you have a website or a blog, ask satisfied customers for feedback that you can post.
- Take advantage of social networking sites (Twitter, Facebook, Linked-In). Utilize those sites as a way to let your customers get to know you. Update your profile and offer relevant comments and hints to those who visit your pages.
- Write articles that are relevant to your business and post them online (there are a number of sites at which to do this). Post comments in business forums for your industry. Start, and maintain, a blog. Also, visit others’ blogs and leave comments.